Staying for a month in New York during summertime has allowed us to wander a little… Much more than Boston, Philadelphia or Washington, Miami and the Keys have captured our enthusiasm despite the difficult season ahead. Because of its tropical climate, South Florida goes into wet mode as soon as the summer arrives. The rains can be strong with hurricanes and / or tornadoes as an extra. And it’s in an apocalyptic sky, after some perilous attempts of landing and lacking kerosene that our flight from New York landed not without troubles on the soggy ground of Fort Myers then, Miami – after refueling – !
Beyond the risk of experiencing big stormy episodes, it is especially the wet heat that is difficult to bear in Miami. Our days were dripping under 30°, sometimes until late at night. To be honest, a large part of our budget has been spent in refreshments! Finally, if you visit Miami during summer, you may be forced to avoid the Everglades and some national parks if the concentration of insects is too high. In all cases, a signage at the entrance of them will inform you about the acceptable presence of mosquitoes.
After reading all this, you don’t wanna to go to Florida anymore, do you ?!
But wait, we’re gonna make you change your mind by telling you everything that went great in the lines below !
Let’s talk about Miami Beach.
Miami and Miami beach are two different entities and it is better not to go in a hurry. Indeed, if Miami Beach and its 39 km² seem already very vast, we quickly understood that a second stay would be necessary to explore the 141 km² of Miami “city”. As an example, the area of Manhattan is 59 km² and 105 km² for Paris… So we spent more time under the plam trees of South Beach than between the buildings of Brickell…
South Beach is certainly related to the Architectural District and its Art Deco facades. The neighborhood is home to 960 listed buildings, built between the 20s and 40s and essentially clustered on Ocean Drive, Collins Ave and Washington Ave. Do not hesitate to pass the doors of bars and hotels because the interior decoration are also worth the stop! Many movies have been shot on and around Ocean Drive including the mythical Scarface. Other buildings are also known to have been crime scenes like Villa Casuarina, better known as the Versace Mansion. Beach side, there is enough to do even if some sections may seem abandoned. But in any case, we advise you to walk on the Lummus Park then the Miami Beach Boardwalk. Along the beach you’ll walk through hotels’ gardens and private homes. Further south, the South Pointer Pier and its surroundings will delight the joggers.
Where to stay in Miami Beach ?
We spent our nights in three different hotels, The South Beach Hall ( That doesn’t exist anymore… ), the Croydon Hotel and the Lincoln Arms Suites. The first two left us with a very pleasant impression. The decor of South Beach Hall was very neat and the rooms, were very original and comfortable. Those of Croydon Hotel are more conventional but more spacious. Of course, swimming pool, bar and restaurant are part of the program but the converted rooftop of Croydon will have definitely won us over. In contrast, we didn’t like the Lincoln Arms Suites at all. Here, we’re talking about studios and apartments rather than hotel rooms but the atmosphere and the services quality were a disaster. Summary lighting, poor soundproofing, low-end equipment… We won’t come back! However, mixing different hotels can be more economical than spending a full week in a $ 300/night establishment. We don’t regret our usual method of making our stay a bit ragged by booking some of our rooms last minute.
By reading these few lines you will have understood that the weather will have spared us during a good part of the week, although the best time to visit Florida remains from October to April. Specifically, we spent the first two days under a pouring rain but we got dry almost instantly as the heat was constantly around 30°C. Beyond this rainy introduction, there have been some stormy episodes throughout the stay but nothing that could hinder the daily plans. The beginning of summer seemed like a relatively acceptable transition to the rainy season, but in this era of climate change, we may not be able to say the same in a few years (Hurricane Irma which ravaged St. Martin, Anguilla, Puerto Rico and hit Cuba, the Keys and Miami a few weeks later)
if you want to prolong the pleasure, read our related posts and watch our video in which you will see everything that has just been told and some small extras …
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See ya !